Our secret fears motivate us to hide or try to hide from ourselves, others and even God. Hiding, though, never works because these kinds of fears will stay with us forever until we willingly let them go. God always see us, and what He sees is the person we will be on the other side of our fears.
I want to be clear that I'm not talking about the fears that are recognizable to us and others, like fear of mice, spiders, snakes, thunder, injections, shots, falls, heights, enclosed spaces, darkness, loud noises, flying, driving, clowns. Yes, fear is a real thing.
The Fear Deep Inside
The kinds of fear I'm talking about are those buried deep inside us and we are allowing to govern our lives in ways we either refuse to acknowledge or don't even recognize.
As a Christian weight-loss coach, I meet many people with these kinds of fears. It is really fear that drives many to think things like, I'm not good enough. No one truly cares about me. I'm not worth loving. I am not strong enough. I am a loser. I'll never be a success. Nothing good will ever happen to me. I can't stand myself.
Most people won't come right out and tell me what they believe until we get into a heart-to-heart conversation. Then they tell me they think their problem is they can't lose weight.
"Why do you think that?" I'll ask.
"Because every time I've tried to lose weight, I've failed. It's just not in the cards for me to lose weight. I guess I'll just stay fat and happy." They laugh, but the problem is, they are far from happy. I know it; they know it; and they desperately want an answer.
Created Without Fear
We think these types of fears have always been with us and are part of how we were created. This is a major fallacy. We were actually created without fear. We know that "God has not given us the spirit of fear, but of power, and love, and a sound mind" (2 Tim. 1:7).
Since it is God who created us, then there is no possible way we entered this world with these kinds of fears attached. God didn't give us a spirit of fear, but He did build into us the instinctive response to run when confronted with something that could be harmful to us. We run from danger.
These are built-in instincts for survival. We are cautious in areas of town with high crime rates. If a dog is growling, we go the other way. We run and hide if we hear gunshots.
What's Even More Scary
As scary as some of those things would be to me, they are not as debilitating as the fear I had when I weighed 430 pounds. That fear kept whispering to me that I was just made to be fat and die and that I would never see my children grow up.
I was afraid that I was not good enough to be used by God for anything of consequence. I was afraid I would never succeed at losing weight or becoming healthy. I had the constant nagging fear that I would never amount to anything.
These fears drove me to try to hide from them by indulging in food more rather than doing anything about my problem. I felt like I was a hopeless case. It was a never-ending cycle, one the enemy loves to perpetuate over and over again.
The knowledge that I was a failure and the fear that I would always be branded that way kept me stuck in what felt like the quicksand of life. There seemed to be no way out.
False Evidence Appearing Real
Fear is just False Evidence Appearing Real. The enemy is really good at feeding us his version of truth, but it's always only half of it. He was the one telling me I was a failure, so I felt and acted like there was no way out of my predicament.
This a partial truth because even though I had failed in a gigantic way, I was never doomed because I had given my life to Christ. Even when I was close to death and ready to give up, God had not given up on me.
He reached out to me through His servants and began showing me a new way to live. He brought people alongside me who didn't judge me but simply helped direct me in how to walk through my fears to discover the light on the other side.
Walking Out of Fear
It began with realizing that nothing happens until I love myself and see myself as a daughter of the King of kings. No matter what is happening to me, I am always His child.
"For the Holy Spirit makes God's fatherhood real to us as He whispers into our innermost being, 'You are God's beloved child!' And since we are His true children, we qualify to share all His treasures, for indeed, we are heirs of God Himself. And since we are joined to Christ, we also inherit all that He is and all that He has" (Rom.8:16-17, TPT).
As a child of God, I do not have to be afraid of the darkness of my failures. It is exactly because I have dwelt in the depths of my own difficulties that I appreciate even more the beauty of the light of grace when I am finally able to dance in it.
God of the Impossible
By God's grace, mercy and strength, I have been able to walk out of that very fearful time in my life to lose more than 250 pounds. It's because of what I've been through that I know that anyone who taps into this same power of the Spirit of God can see the impossible happen in their lives as well.
"Jesus looked at them intently and said, 'Humanly speaking, it is impossible. But not with God. Everything is possible with God'" (Mark 10:27, NLT).
Most of the time, the devil is able to make us think the molehill is really a mountain. It's only a mountain if that's the way we see it. God's ready for us to let go of how we see our issue and begin to see it through His eyes.
Through God's Eyes
We walk around blind to who we really are, but are eyes are wide open to who the devil says we are. If we can begin to see ourselves through God's eyes, everything will change.
God sees us as His beloved children. In us He sees potential, possibility and promise. He sees us as His works of art, His masterpieces, His poetry (See Eph. 2:10).
First though, you must let go of your fears. They never were yours in the first place. Simply acknowledge them and then hand then to God.
Now it's time to grab hold of the entirely new way of looking at yourself. See who you are through God's eyes.
You, my friend, are beautiful.
Teresa Shields Parker is the author of five books and two study guides, including her latest, Sweet Journey to Transformation: Practical Steps to Lose Weight and Live Healthy, and her No. 1 best-seller, Sweet Grace: How I Lost 250 Pounds. She is also a blogger, spiritual weight loss coach (check out her coaching group, Overcomers Academy) and speaker at TeresaShieldsParker.com.
This article originally appeared at teresashieldsparker.com.
Get Spirit-filled content delivered right to your inbox! Click here to subscribe to our newsletter.
Great Resources to help you excel in 2019! #1 John Eckhardt's "Prayers That..." 6-Book Bundle. Prayer helps you overcome anything life throws at you. Get a FREE Bonus with this bundle. #2 Learn to walk in the fullness of your purpose and destiny by living each day with Holy Spirit. Buy a set of Life in the Spirit, get a second set FREE.